Worcester Polytechnic Institute

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Founded in 1865, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) is a private technological university with over 4,200 undergraduates and over 2,000 graduate students. In 1970, WPI adopted the WPI Plan, which incorporated project-based learning in our curriculum. Among requirements adopted at that time was the junior year Interactive Qualifying Project (IQP). In completing their IQP, student teams work closely with faculty advisers to undertake a research project addressing some question at the intersection of science/technology and society. Currently, most WPI students complete their IQP off-campus at one of 30 project centers located in 26 countries on 6 continents.

Our objective is to challenge students with authentic, open-ended problems as they explore the interactions between society and technology. As such, the project promotes learning in teamwork, critical thinking, problem solving, information literacy and professional communication.